Sea, Sea, Sea Drifter / See, See, See, Drifter by Slumberland

Release date: February 1, 2019
Label: Consouling Sounds

Often, when we want to characterize something, including music, that in its experimentation uses more or less everything, we tend to say: ‘everything but a kitchen sink’. Belgian experimentalist Jochem Baelus who goes under the name Slumberland (him and his two drumming buddies, Alfredo Bravo from Flying Horsemen and Frederik Meulyzer from Star Dogs), take that one step further on their latest release Sea, Sea, Sea Drifter / See, See, See, Drifter. They include the kitchen sink, and a few other things like re-engineered sewing machines and film projectors and a bunch of other things that make some sort of a sound.

If you expect some sort of a rhythmic racket, you got it. But then not really. The trio helped here in their efforts by Radwan Ghazi Momneh, the Constellation Records in-house producer and extraordinary music maker himself, take the term post-rock another step further. In the direction of the post part of the term.

Is there noise here? Sure, but it serves a purpose, and it is in a subdued form, as the element that carries and propels the actual music… and Baelus’ Nick Cave/John Cale – style vocals. Tracks like ‘Rashomon’ or ‘Manta Ray’ expand on Slumberland’s obvious Krautrock influences, particularly the Can/Faust strand that evolves on rhythmic patterns and sound experimentation.

And that sound is fighting to come out of a murky depth of a refrigeration unit somewhere in the Dutch tulip fields where it was recorded (Voorhout, to be precise), trying to bust the doors open and throw out all those tulip bulbs toward your ears.

With all the improbabilities of the sounds on Sea, Sea Sea Drifter / See, See, See, Drifter sounding remotely musical, they do! Throughout, Baelus and his cohorts leave you wondering which sound is which, to force you at one moment not to care anymore and just enjoy their dark musical concoction. Murky? Yes! Enjoyable? Even more so!

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